Drowning in Open Positions? Try Custom Swim Lanes!

Every restaurant is different, shouldn’t your hiring process reflect your business?

Introducing: Custom Swim Lanes

At Harri we take the time to hear the needs of our clients and do our best to reflect the feedback back into our system for you.  The term “swim lanes”, refers to the columns in the flow a candidate goes through from application to hire.  We understand that every restaurant business is unique, especially when it comes to hiring processes.  Many restaurants require 2nd and 3rd interviews with candidates, or more commonly trial (aka stage or trail) shifts before extending final offers. With this in mind, we built Custom Swim Lanes (CSL) so that restaurants have the ability to manage applicants their way.  Using CSL restaurants and/or restaurant groups are able to add or subtract the swim lanes depending on the position and hiring process.

Some Excellent Benefits of Custom Swim Lanes:

  • Manage and decentralize Source & Hire process effortlessly
  • Customize hiring columns or swim lanes to correspond with existing hiring processes
  • Gives restaurants the ability to add or subtract steps in the hiring flow
  • Allows corporate and management teams to send individual or bulk message candidates at any stage
  • Messages are recorded into speedy screen and message center - with the ability to add attachments and save templates
  • Corporate and management teams can see every candidate “applied” date and time to help prioritize screening and interviews 

**Custom Swim Lanes (CSL) is a Premium Service for clients presently using Source & Hire.

If you’re interested in learning more about CSL schedule a demo:

Attract Applicants and Tell Your Restaurant's Story with Career Story Pages

Showcasing Your Hiring Brand Can Make a HUGE Difference.

Introducing: Career Story Page

With the industry labor talent pool thinning, the war for top notch hospitality talent is only becoming more fierce with time. Every restaurant and hospitality group is seeking to hire the very best people to work and grow with them.  Using media rich and custom curated content, a Career Story Page gives businesses the ability to attract high quality (and quantity!) talent by showcasing their one-of-a-kind work cultures and open opportunities.

  • OPTIMIZE employee fit by telling the story of your company’s unique culture and giving applicants the most accurate sense of what it’s like to be apart of your team!

  • EDUCATE potential candidates about your restaurant brand before they even click “Apply”.  This will increase the chances of attracting candidates, who specifically seek out your brand.  

  • ATTRACT great talent consistently by portraying a more personal brand, further humanizing your hiring process.  

Our Career Story Page is a premium feature of Source+Hire— only for those dedicated to winning the war on hospitality talent.  Access Harri's Career Story Page by becoming a Source+Hire client.*

To learn more, schedule a FREE 10-Minute demo with one of our Talent Specialists:

Survey Finds New York City Restaurant Workers Worry More About Lost Tips than Higher Wages

"Over a period of just 105 weeks (December 12, 2016 – January 9, 2019) the minimum wage in New York City will jump 135% from $9 to $15."

The debate over increasing the minimum wage has been a contentious one throughout the past year. If you own or manage a restaurant or bar, it will likely continue to be one of your primary business concerns in 2017. Yet, it may surprise you to learn that for most of your servers and bartenders, changing the tipping policy may do more to shake their feelings of financial security than not receiving a government-mandated pay increase.

To see how businesses and employees are responding to this changing landscape, we conducted a proprietary survey of almost 800 chefs, servers, bartenders and other restaurant staff, the vast majority of whom are based in New York City. We wanted to gauge how a minimum wage increase, fluctuations in their work schedules, and the trend of implementing a no-tipping policy which restaurants are increasingly adopting would affect their job satisfaction levels. Interestingly, the questions related to tipping policies elicited the strongest, and most uniform, responses.

The impact of these wage increases will be greater in New York City than anywhere else simply by the sheer number of restaurants and staff it takes to keep the ovens on, food on the plates and diners happy. Wage increases in New York City are the most aggressive in terms of size and speed. Over a period of just 105 weeks (December 12, 2016 – January 9, 2019) the minimum wage in New York City will jump 135% from $9 to $15.

So we first asked respondents about whether a minimum wage increase would have a significant impact on their paychecks. You might expect 100 percent of them to say “Yes!”

In fact, the responses were nearly split down the middle. 51 percent indicated “no” while 49 percent answered “yes.” Dive a little deeper into the survey’s findings, and you’ll learn why.

But they were much more single-minded when it came to potential changes to their employers’ tipping policies:

·      70 percent confirmed a change would compel them to look for a second job.

·      63 percent said a "no-tipping policy" would deter them from applying for a job at a restaurant.

Employees and job seekers gave us some very enlightening and interesting answers when we asked them specifically how has the increased minimum wage changed their job seeking strategy?

“It doesn't affect me much as I am a tipped employee, so I never see my paycheck as it is. If people stopped tipping because of wage increases, then I would have a SERIOUS problem!”

“I feel it will make it more competitive, especially amongst small business owners. A well trained, professional staff is hard to come by nowadays.”

“It has caused me to look for positions that are less experienced because entry-level postings will have higher pay than it used to be.”

Interestingly enough, while a change in tipping policy is of great concern to employees, a concurrent survey we conducted of owners/operators found that tipping policies are more than likely to stay in place. 85% of respondents stated that the increase in minimum wage would not affect their tipping policies.

However, nearly 50% of respondents did say that the increase in wages would force them to reduce staff hours. That decision will likely carry serious repercussions for both sides: 79% of the employees we surveyed said they will have to look for a second job if their hours are reduced.

55% of owners/operators told us that they would have to raise menu prices now to offset the wage increases, with a further 66% raising prices over the coming six months. Of those owners/operators who said they would have to raise menu prices, 40% said they would raise prices by 5% while 30% said they would only raise prices by two percent. 89% said these price rises would have a negative or neutral impact.

If we take a thirty-thousand-foot view of this data, it shows us that the industry is at a crossroads. Employees are more concerned about their tips and hours than wages. Yet employers are not ready to join the trend of changing tipping policies and are instead more likely to cut hours. 

The question becomes how do owners/operators manage their costs, retain and hire the best talent all while keeping their entire staff happy? 

A key factor in your decision-making process should be just how expensive a high employee turnover rate can be. In 2016, we built a model that calculated turnover costs based on the data we were given by Harri clients across fine dining, casual dining, and quick service restaurants. This data shows us just how high the cost of finding new talent across an organization can be:

Of course, turnover is unavoidable in our industry, which the Bureau of Labor Statistics ranks among the highest along with construction, retail and customer service. However, owners and operators are not taking advantage of new technologies and innovations as 52% of respondents told us they have not considered using technology to offset increased labor costs.  There are many solutions available, one of which is Harri’s Total Talent Solution, that can significantly reduce those costs by cutting hiring time up to nearly 70 percent and saving up to nearly 50 percent in hiring costs. But it’s also important to dedicate your time and energy to retaining your current employees. After all, the longer employees are with you, the more valuable they become.

Another major cost center is scheduling of the most overlooked ways for owners/operators to avoid turnover is clearer communication between owners/operators and employees. While it certainly is better for employees to have hours reduced rather than having their position eliminated altogether, this shows us it is of utmost importance for owners and operators to get a handle on their scheduling as well as their team communication.

Owners/operators who do not change their tipping policies are more likely to reduce staff hours. While this might seem like a simple process, getting schedules wrong will cost more than what you could save by getting them right. Analyzing their most crucial shifts, identifying the strongest members of their staff, and ensure they’re on the floor during those times is time-consuming and costly. That’s why we created Harri TeamLive which significantly reduces labor costs by managing schedules more intelligently, tying schedules to historical performance and business intelligence, and offering seamless team communication amongst managers, line-level staff and even overseeing corporate team members. All built on a mobile and millennial-minded platform.

This survey is a first look how the lives and bottom lines of restaurant operators, managers and employees will significantly change in 2017. That’s why we’re going to field this same survey multiple times throughout the year to see how the changes in wages and tipping policies affect the job security of employees, the prospects of job seekers and the balance sheets of owners and operators. 

In the meantime, we’d love to hear your thoughts on whether you’re considering implementing any changes to your tipping policies, how increased wages are affecting you, or if you’re an owner/operator, how you’re dealing with wage increases this year. Please post your comments and questions below.

How To Spot A Restaurant Employee with High Management Potential

The hospitality industry is built on the backs of its people, which is why internal growth is the cornerstone of restaurant success.  If you are failing to promote from within then you are doing a disservice to your staff and ultimately your business.  Some managers and owners make the mistake of giving promotions to those with tenure, but forget to consider if the respective employee is ready for the responsibilities that come with their new title.  There are also cases of management pushing titles onto staff, whom have no desire for promotion - which usually end in terminations and hostile work environments.  As restaurants expand, their Human Resources practices must as well, recognizing high potential line-level employees (cooks, servers, cashiers, etc) early will only help to cultivate the growth of your business as a whole.   

Great Attitude

A “great attitude” does not always mean “happy all the time”, it implies that he or she has a “does whatever it takes” outlook while at work.  Everyday, service throws curve balls to line-level employees.  Whether it’s an on the fly catering order in the middle of lunch service or the stove pilot decides to not light before peak dinner service, there are obstacles that can really test employees’ ability to keep calm in chaos.  The most capable employees, who overcome these obstacles, usually reveal themselves throughout their time working in the restaurant.  Finding these employees is not difficult, it’s all about paying closer attention to your staff.  Workers who handle challenges that come their way proficiently, tend to go above and beyond in other aspects of service as well.  Maybe they cultivate regulars by remembering their names and orders, coming in a little earlier or staying later to get the job done.  Positivity is definitely a plus, and if that comes with problem management skills and logical thinking in chaos - even better!  These are the employees to watch for potential.  

Exemplary Team Player     

    All of your strongest staff should be team players, if you suspect that even one of them is not, it may be time to rethink your hiring strategy.  As there are accessible systems to keep track of your employees' performance, your restaurant is only as strong as your weakest employee. For the best ones to rise to the occasion they must be surrounded by equally good workers.  For a management potential employee, you need a team player who can teach others how to play the game.  Keep an eye out for ambitious employees, who go ahead of their stations, and are able to help out others who might get in the weeds during a busy service.  Hopefully, you will be able to recognize 1-2 employees with the ability to catch others when they fall, and hustle when their team is in need (which is most of the time).  Exemplary team players will have good rapport with others in the restaurant, and team members will be able to give instances on when these people have stepped up to the plate.  If you see certain employees really flourish, especially under pressure, it would be smart to keep tabs on those ones.  

Has “Sponsors”

 Similarly to the business world, having sponsors in the restaurant industry can get top performing employees to higher positions fast.  Once you believe you have pinpointed one or more high potential employees, speak to their supervising managers, staff they may have trained, and peers who have worked with them side by side.  If any of these sponsors jump at the opportunity to vouch for them, it’s a very good sign.  However, there is always a chance a manager might fear losing a strong team member, and deny an employee’s clearly high performance (fortunately, this is rare).  Still, be diligent about gaining multiple opinions, and always assure managers that if a leading team member is being promoted then you will allow ample time for them to train their successors.  The last thing you need is a bitter manager on your hands.    

Aligned Career Goals

    Now that you see potential in a line-level employee, it’s time to have an open discussion about the management position at hand.  Have his or her current manager arrange a time to meet with you.  Having coffee or a plain 1-on-1 works well for this instance, as long as it is a private conversation to gage honest interest in the promotion.  This conversation could go one of two ways: 1) The employee is elated that he or she has been presented this opportunity, and will happily begin the steps for manager training. 2) The team member may be reluctant to leave their team members behind, may have different career goals or refuse the position for monetary reasons.  (In some cases government subsidies are denied if a household combined salary is over a certain amount, this is very common.)  Layout clear cut expectations, salary range, and benefits of the respective position, and be sure to give them some time to think about it (a week or so is polite).  The worst case scenario is that the person turns down the position, and you have to begin the process again.  If this happens then Harri.com is always here to help when you are in need qualified talent.  

HARRI APPOINTS RALF HIRT AS CHIEF OPERATING OFFICER

Global SaaS executive to lead Harri’s next phase of growth

January 13, 2017 -- New York City: Harri, the most complete and effective SaaS solution to source, hire, and manage talent in the hospitality industry, today announced that Ralf Hirt has joined the company as Chief Operating Officer (COO). The new position has been created to drive operational and financial performance across the business and to take responsibility for leading the company’s efforts to scale the organization and foster its global footprint.

Hirt joins Harri from TUNE, an integrated digital marketing SaaS solution and supply-side eco-system, where he served as Chief Revenue Officer. Prior to working for TUNE, Hirt led the global expansion of Mode Media Corporation and spent nine years at DoubleClick (Google) in various management positions including Managing Director Asia Pacific and VP Operations & Strategic Partnerships contributing to the sale to Google for $3.2 billion.

“We couldn’t be more excited to bring Ralf on board at this point of our company’s stage,” said Harri Founder and CEO Luke Fryer. “Ralf is an accomplished executive with more than 20 years of operational leadership experience and brings to this position a strong reputation for fast growing companies, developing people and inspiring teams. His wealth of experience in helping companies expand into new markets while driving revenue growth will be invaluable going forward.”

In addition to his various leadership roles, Hirt has served as an advisor to various firms in the digital and IT space including sixteen years at Prion-Group until the sale to Accenture. Hirt is also the author of one book, 8W8 - Global Space Tribes, and co-author of another, Infrastructure and Productivity in Asia.

“I have been intrigued by the quality of the solutions portfolio the team at Harri has been building and now am looking forward to scaling our business worldwide” said Ralf Hirt, COO of Harri. “Harri has led the way in bringing solutions to the hospitality industry that are leading edge, save cost, increase productivity and are an enjoyable experience for both employer and employee.”

“While 2016 was a terrific year for the hospitality industry, it faces a number of critical challenges such as rising labor costs and talent retention,” continued Fryer. “Ralf’s background, especially in software solutions and measurement, is perfectly suited to drive the adoption of Harri’s next generation technology to help owners, operators and managers address these challenges.”

Hirt will be based in Harri’s U.S. headquarters in New York City.

To learn more about Harri, visit www.harri.com.

ABOUT HARRI
Harri is a platform built to help the hospitality industry source, hire and manage their employees more effectively and efficiently. As it is becoming increasingly expensive to find, hire, keep, pay, train and manage staff, Harri reduces overall labor management costs by ensuring our clients get the right people in the right roles and then maximizes their employees performance and efficiency. Harri clients including many of the world’s leading hospitality companies and restaurants, including TAO Group, The Gerber Group, Spago, Morgan’s Hotel Group, The Peninsula Hotels and many others. Harri is headquartered in New York City.  Learn more at www.harri.com
 

CONTACT:

David Barkoe

Carve Communications for Harri

david@carvecomms.com

917-359-7222